Haziran 14, 2024

THE RISING OF THE SUN-LIKE STAR: T TAURI

Hubble has captured the birth of a Sun-like star!

This new image reveals a triple star system located about 550 light-years away.

These three stars shine through a hollowed-out cavity in a reflection nebula, illuminating the surrounding clouds. These stars are known as HP Tau, HP Tau G2 and HP Tau G3.

THE RISING OF THE SUN-LIKE STAR: T TAURI

HP Tau is located in the nebula and in the upper part of the trio. It is classified as a T Tauri star, a young variable star that has not yet undergone nuclear fusion but is beginning to transform into a hydrogen-fuelled star similar to our Sun.

T Tauri stars are usually less than 10 million years old and are usually found in the clouds of gas and dust from which they formed (for comparison, our Sun is 4.6 billion years old!).

THE RISING OF THE SUN-LIKE STAR: T TAURI

The brightness of a variable star changes over time. T Tauri stars experience both periodic and random fluctuations in brightness. Random variations are caused by explosions on the star's surface, while periodic variations can be caused by large sunspots moving in and out of view.

This new Hubble image was taken with Wide Field Camera 3, which was added to the telescope 15 years ago this week during the last astronaut servicing mission to the orbiting observatory.

THE RISING OF THE SUN-LIKE STAR: T TAURI

Image description:

Three bright stars with diffraction spikes shine near the right centre of the image, illuminating the surrounding pale blue clouds. The clouds darken towards the edges of the image and are dotted with smaller stars, some with diffraction spikes.

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SPACE IMAGE RESEMBLING A SPINNING TOP

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